The Dream

7 March 2022
The Dream

Nirvana Turkish Masters, Turkey’s first professional snooker tournament, begins. With a great enthusiasm and happiness…

I stopped at Eurosport one day while zapping on TV and my life changed. I am not exaggerating… Coincidentally, at that time, I picked up a billiard cue for the first time and was easily defeated by my friends who were much more knowledgeable than I was. Worse still, I had a ridiculous technique where I couldn’t hit the ball properly. As someone who often prides himself on being good at sports, I have to admit that my ego was hurt. That’s why what I saw on the TV window caught my attention. A big green table, men in bow ties playing pool with the precision, seriousness and calmness of a surgeon…

I started watching. I was trying to make inferences by looking at how they put their hands on the table, how they held the cue, how they hit the balls. I had not mastered the rules yet, but the tension under the stagnation reminiscent of a festival film gripped me. According to the announcer, I was watching the world championship final of 2006. Then I heard that the match continued the next day and went back to the screen. Then I opened the internet, started researching. This is how my passion for snooker started, which I will never be able to break away from again and will turn into a profession for me.

After 16 years, I came to Antalya to watch the first professional snooker tournament hosted by Turkey. To be honest, I would not have expected that one day I would see in my country the actors that I had the chance to narrate on Eurosport screens for about seven years. We hosted the World Amateur Snooker Championship in 2019, but watching the professionals and the best… I am still amazed when I see where the journey started and where it ended. It’s hard not to get excited when there are hours left before the tournament starts.

The Dream
Judd Trump

So how did the idea of organizing a snooker tournament in Turkey come about? First of all, it was a distant dream. It’s a dream come true when cities close to our geography, such as Sofia and Bucharest, host snooker tournaments. This British game, which Eurosport has popularized across Continental Europe since the nineties, has always been “I wonder?” it was called. However, the person who took action on this issue was dear Tuğba İrten. İrten, a snooker player who lived in England for many years and came to the brink of professionalism several times; “I will do whatever it takes to develop this sport that I love in my own country. I have some surprise projects and dreams in my mind,” he said. Nirvana Turkish Masters was the result of those dreams.

“Who will we watch in Antalya?” Let me summarize briefly for those who say. Judd Trump, the undisputed best in the world in the last few years, four-time world champion John Higgins and his legendary contemporary Mark Williams are the most prominent participants. Shaun Murphy, Mark Allen, Ding Junhui, Stephen Maguire and countless other famous names will also be on the table in Turkey’s first professional tournament. Snooker’s iconic figure, Ronnie O’Sullivan, required an extra fee to participate and is sadly absent from the first edition. Reigning world champion Mark Selby and fit Neil Robertson have also recently requested their pardon for personal reasons. Of course, the tournament is contracted until 2025. In other words, it is quite possible that we will see them in the future.

Anyone who loves snooker and has the means and time can spend at least one day a week watching world-class snooker at Nirvana Cosmopolitan. Tickets are still on sale and it’s not too late. If they will not go to Antalya, they can join the excitement from the beginning of the screen as always. For those of you who have never watched snooker before and heard about snooker for the first time, I think you should try your luck. And who knows, big green table and serious guys with bow ties maybe change someone’s life…